What happens if a motif gathers larger significance through the text? 

One answer is that it becomes an element of symbolism. 

Symbols are devices that stand for something else or carry some symbolic meaning beyond what they represent. 

On the one hand, symbols can be understood as not having any concrete literal meaning at all; on the other hand, they can stand for things which are usually intangible.

 They evoke strong feelings and emotions in their audience because symbols, consciously or not, act as metaphors. A symbol might be a sign, an image, or a metaphor.

What can a motif contribute to, or become, when it gathers larger significance throughout a text?

This is a question that can be firstly answered by looking at how motifs act as an effective way of conveying specific meanings.

 The reason why symbols are used in literature is because they prove to convey certain meanings, which can also be carried out in different settings.

The usage of symbolism can help readers to gain knowledge about the world around them, and how the themes are not always obvious. 

This relates to researchers’ view that art helps people gain new knowledge about themselves and their surroundings, something called aesthetic learning (Macleod, 1979). 

Aesthetic learning involves reading text in a creative way, which involves making connections between things we have learned previously and new things as well.

1. Cultural Symbolism

Cultural symbols have been used in literature since the time of Ancient Greece and Ancient Rome. 

Authors have been using cultural symbols as a way to express ideas about their culture. There are many examples of where the usage of allegory and symbolism has helped to conveying certain messages. 

For instance, The Princess and the Pea (1842) by Hans Christian Andersen can be used as an example on how to convey different meanings with cultural symbols: 

Examples from this story include that the princess’s name is “Dorothea”, which represents not just royalty, but also tenderness. 

In addition, the princess is so fond of her dog that she even puts a prince’s ring to use by placing it on the dog’s collar. 

These two symbols help to convey the message that she is so loyal to everything in life. Another example is that there is a boy who lives next door to the princess which represents “the boy next door”.

2. Reference to Religions

The usage of religion as a symbol in literature has been used as well in order for authors to strengthen points they are trying to convey. 

For instance, The Scarlet Letter shows us how people can use various religions as a way of displaying their own moral values. 

One example is that the Redeemer College symbolizes the Puritan religion and the school’s motto, “Redeemer of Zion, Redeemer of Mankind”. 

This symbol can represent a humanitarian way of life because it is trying to help people in every way possible.

3. Cultural Metaphors

Cultural metaphors are a part of literature which represents specific cultural notions such as time, death, and memory, for instance. 

They have been used to show how different cultures have different ways of expressing their own cultural ideals and values.

 In addition, they are used to provide readers with information about different traditions and history.

For instance, in this short story “The Sparrow” by Mary Doria Russell, the main character uses symbolism to show us a message about the culture. 

The story is about an old man who has finally discovered his true purpose for living as well as what he had been doing before his life.

 He was an old man with a bird on his shoulder and he had been engaged in singing to it all of his life while waiting at a site that they called the graveyard of birds where he was waiting for something to happen. 

This symbol can help readers to understand how people in ancient times used to show their respect for their ancestors by placing them in a graveyard right next to their house or their burial ground. 

4. Symbols in the Bible

Symbolism has been a part of the Bible since it was first created. 

It might not be as common, because of the fact that every single word in it can be considered a symbol or a metaphor, but even so it can be found throughout the book.

 For instance, one symbol in the Bible is baptism, which is not just about washing off of sins but about regeneration. The blood on Israel’s doorposts is another symbolic act which shows protection from the Angel of Death and protection from God as well . 

The Bible displays symbolism to convey several messages. Some examples from it are the Tower of Babel and the Snake of Paradise, which symbolize pride for human beings and power.


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